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Perovskite solar cells offer an alternative approach to photovoltaic solar power generation versus traditional silicon solar cells, by rivaling their efficiency at potentially less than half the cost. Perovskite’s name comes from the crystal structure that encompasses the active layer (Methylammonium Lead Iodide – CH3NH3PbI3), the region that absorbs photons and generates electrical energy by creating electron hole pairs. The presence of the organic cation (methylammonium) causes degradation of the active layer under humidity, UV light, and high temperature, which lowers the effectiveness of the cells. This project investigates low-cost routes and materials for realization of high efficiency and long-term perovskite solar cells. In order to combat humidity, the device is encapsulated, usually with a polymer coating. Moreover, the UV photons, which otherwise would be filtered by the glass substrate are converted to visible photons by a photon conversion layer, which is coated on the opposite side of the substrate from the device itself. These visible photons can then reach the active layer and add to the electrical energy generation, enhancing the device efficiency. The low production cost of these solar cells originates from the low processing temperatures, under 150°C, compared to silicon, 1400°C, and simple fabrication procedures. Not only do the lower temperatures reduce cost, they also reduce the carbon footprint of the fabrication process. In addition, perovskite solar cells can be fabricated on light-weight and flexible substrates, widening the range of their potential applications, which include powering surveillance drones and wearable sensors implemented in the warfighter’s uniform.

Publication Date



solar cells, photon conversion, perovskite


Electrical and Computer Engineering | Engineering

Faculty Advisor/Mentor

Dr. Ümit Özgür

Faculty Advisor/Mentor

Dr. Vitaliy Avrutin

VCU Capstone Design Expo Posters


© The Author(s)

Date of Submission

May 2018

Low Cost and Durable Perovskite Solar Cells